Canadian Solar and SkyPower enter purchase and joint venture agreement
By Anthony Capkun
April 17, 2012 – Today, Canadian Solar Inc. and SkyPower Ltd. entered into a purchase and international joint venture agreement, which creates a team “comprising one of the world’s largest solar companies and Canada’s largest owner and developer of solar projects” to build and deploy solar energy solutions in Ontario, and jointly develop solar projects internationally in “select emerging markets”.
Under the agreement, Canadian Solar will acquire a majority interest in 16 solar projects from SkyPower, representing about 190-200 MW DC. Each of these projects was awarded a 20-year power purchase contract by the Ontario Power Authority (OPA). 15 of these contracts were issued under Ontario’s Feed-In-Tariff program, and one was issued as part of Ontario’s Renewable Energy Standard Offer Program (RESOP). These projects are in the advanced permitting stage and are expected to commence construction in 2013 and be fully operational in 2014. They are expected to generate over $800 million in revenue for Canadian Solar.
Canadian Solar and SkyPower have also agreed to form a 50:50 international joint venture focused on developing solar power plants in select emerging markets. The Canadian Solar expects to start generating revenue from this global strategic initiative within the next two to three years.
The transaction price is about $185 million to be paid at certain milestones. In conjunction with the transaction, a five-year warrant is being issued to SkyPower for 9.9% of Canadian Solar’s outstanding shares, with a strike price of $5 US.
“Importantly, while the total mega-wattage in the transaction is significant… the actual project sizes are directly aligned with our strategy of concentrating on smaller utility-scale projects that, individually, are less risky to finance and execute on,” remarked Dr. Shawn Qu, chair and CEO of Canadian Solar. “We remain open to larger projects should the opportunity be matched with our ability to obtain financing and construct the projects, and we are excited about the opportunity to expand our relationship with SkyPower in select international markets through our new joint venture.”